Saturday’s Asian Festival is a food-lover’s paradise

If you love Asian food, exotic food, spicy food — really, if you love food — you should make a point to visit Saturday’s Asian Festival at Century II.

The event, now in its 33rd year, is intended as a peek into Asian culture in Wichita, but the main attraction is a giant food court featuring 40 different vendors serving cuisine native to 12 different countries.

New this year is Sri Lankan food. Two brothers representing Wichita’s 200-strong Sri Lankan community will be serving several native dishes, including one called koththu roti — a popular Sri Lankan street food made with curry and chopped meat and vegetables.

“It’s my favorite Sri Lankan food ever,” said TJ Jayaratne, who will be raising money for a planned Sri Lankan Buddhist temple for Wichita. “It’s so good. Back home, you would find a koththu store or two every half mile or so on the roadside.”

Admission to the festival, which lasts from 5:30 to 10 p.m., is free, and several local restaurants will be represented, too. Read my story that’s going in Friday’s Go! section for more details.